Countdown and cult music television programmes: an Australian case study

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Journal Article
Intensities: the journal of cult media, 2013, 6 (Autumn/Winter), pp. 31 - 56
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Music television programs, programs that focus on music for their core content, have been produced all over the world for all types of markets. However there remains little sustained work on them beyond studies of key production periods, franchise waves or biography-like narratives. This article shows that theories of Cult TV can be applied to music television programs to help explore this neglected form, as well as helping to expand Cult TV’s theoretical reach beyond its traditional fare of narrative driven, fiction series. This article offers 1970s and ‘80s Australian music television program Countdown as a prime example of Cult TV, first in the context of its initial production and consumption in 1970s and ‘80s Australia, and also in terms of its subsequent influence on contemporary audiences from a historical perspective. The Cult TV frame extends to the program itself in its original incarnation, as well as additional recontextualisations in new music television programs, and the continued work of its former host, Ian ‘Molly’ Meldrum
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